BRIDGMAN, Mich. Coach Brian Kelly says he decided to announce Tommy Rees as Notre Dame's starting quarterback after having time to think, even though he initially said it would be a three-way competition in August.
"I hadn't had time to think about Everett not being our starter. As I got a chance to think about it, Tommy does not have to fight to be the No. 1 quarterback," Kelly said Wednesday at the Irish Legends Golf Outing in Bridgman, Michigan.
Kelly reiterated he believes senior Andrew Hendrix can help the Fighting Irish and freshman Malik Zaire will continue to grow in the position. Kelly needed to find a new starting quarterback after Everett Golson was suspended for the fall by the university for what the player called poor academic judgment.
There have been media reports that Golson is considering playing at a junior college. Kelly says Golson has indicated he's focusing on improving his academics, and he doesn't think he will play football this fall.
1988 National Championship coach Lou Holtz was one of the three hosts of the event Wednesday along with Ara Parseghian and Kelly.
Holtz said Rees can't make up for the loss of Golson by himself.
"You don't expect Tommy Rees to replace him. But what everybody else has to do is pick up a little bit of the load," he said.